How effective is the U.S Congress?
Congress is a branch of the federal government, it was the most stressed and important branch in the view of the founding fathers’ constitution. Congress Is made up of two houses, The House of Representatives and the Senate. The constitution is very old in the style of language used and it doesn’t have a written limit to the powers of Congress, this has led to an elastic clause. The elastic clause allows congress to stretch its existing powers to suit the demands from society. For example when the founding fathers wrote the constitution international commerce and relations was not as big and prominent as it is today, due to the elastic clause the powers originally held by congress have now.
One reason Congress is effective is because the constant re-election Members have to face. Members of the House and 1/3 of the senate face re-election every 2 years, this means that the members have to be more switched on and Intune with their state, constantly re assessing what the state wants from congress and their views. A member may spend a lot of time in the state as well as congress or may have people on the ground working in the state for them. Due to the constant re-election the member is perpetually campaigning spending vast amounts of money to try and keep their seat. Therefore due to the constant fear of re-election congress is more effective as members are constantly working to represent their state.
Another reason is that the members, despite belonging to a party, do not have to pull the party line. In the UK House of commons MPs have to vote with their party which sometimes means going against the views of their constituency. However in congress members don’t have to pull the party line because they reflect the views of their state and not their party due to the fear of not being re-elected. Therefore the effectiveness increases due to the sates wishes being more priority over the party.